LET’S TAKE A moment to congratulate the Arkansas Razorback basketball team for keeping up their tradition of letting ME — their Number One Fair Weather Fan — down hard in big games. They did their usual swell job.
I have been wondering if any fans made the trip to Detroit for the game. Sounds like a wonderful time.
As I expected, a group of imposters showed up for that first round game in the NCAA tournament. I can’t stand to watch ‘my’ team play on television, so my knowledge of the fanny-whipping administered by Butler University is based strictly upon information relayed from some fans who CAN stand to watch the Hogs turn in their usual collapse when we need them the most.
At least we weren’t beaten by Nebraska Wesleyan or by St. Rita’s of Colorado or by the Scrimshaw Institute of Wheel Balancing of Scalp, Okla., as I had predicted.
Best I can figure, someone on the UA staff left the team’s defensive playbook back in Fayetteville. Rather than play the wrong defense, apparently we just avoided playing defense altogether.
Well, thank goodness our brand new Athletic Director has extended Head Basketball Coach Mike Anderson’s contract so we don’t have to worry about any other school stealing him from us for the next two years. To be honest, I don’t think Mike Anderson would be interested in coaching at St. Rita’s anyway.
READ THIS. GET MUNCHIES. One or more of my regular readers will recall an item in a fairly recent column about the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame, a thingy which got started two years ago by the Arkansas Department of Heritage.
There were, I believe, 11 nominees this year, and here are the winners for the second running of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame:
Franke’s Cafeteria (Little Rock)
McClard’s BBQ (Hot Springs)
Venesian Inn (Tontitown)
They join previous winners: Jones BBQ, Lee County; Lassis Inn, Little Rock; and Rhoda’s Famous Hot Tamales, Lake Village.
There were some other divisions, too, although in my mind they were not nearly as important as the Hall. The winner of the food-themed event was the Gillett Coon Supper. Winner of ‘Gone But Not Forgotten’ was Cotham’s Mercantile (Scott). And the People’s Choice: JJ’s Lakeside Cafe in Lake Village. Never heard of JJ’s but if it’s in east Arkansas there are obviously a bunch of people who would swear it is the best in the world.
I want to take issue with McClard’s being described as a BBQ joint. The last two times I’ve been there I had tamales. Could not resist. Maybe after the racing season is over I’ll go back and force myself to order ribs.
Not just anyone can pay an entry fee and get into the Coon Supper. You got to be someone semi-Arkie famous or a politician willing to spend big bucks at a pre-meal auction. So, I question whether the Gillett Coon supper should be eligible, but my sincerest congratulations for being clever enough to start and maintain this tradition. The event was originally a fund-raiser for the Gillett High School Wolves athletic booster club. But there’s no longer a Gillett High School. So I don’t have an inkling where the money goes.
Next time the Hall of Fame oughta consider the Hope Watermelon Festival or a crawdad festival in one of those deserted east Arkansas towns because they seem to have some kind of an ‘in’ with voters.
Our community’s wild game expert, Sen. Larry Teague, says he went to the Gillett Coon Supper in 1997, his first year in the House of Representatives. He admits that he did sample coon and possum and other game dishes, but that he has not been tempted to go back for seconds. You gotta get a ticket to be admitted, he says. So, it’s open, but not so open. See the difference?
Cotham’s burned. But I had a chance to sample their food at their Little Rock location before it closed. Nothing outstanding, I assure you.
Next year I will remind you to vote for Joda’s in the Gone But Not Forgotten category.
Joda’s was not the only notable eatery in Nashville during my formative days. We also had The Freeze King and Dale’s Little Gem. The Plaza Cafe. The dining room at the Garner Hotel.
I’ve got to stop writing about this. The front of my shirt is wringing wet from drool.
THINGS I LEARNED from opening email. The location of your mailbox shows you how far away from your house you can go in a robe before you start looking like a mental patient.
WORD GAMES. The twins: Over and Under. Completely different from Over and Above, and Over and Out, don’t ya think?
HE SAID: “When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator.” Mahatma Gandhi, father of India
SHE SAID: “You know, failure hurts. Any kind of failure stings. If you live in the sting, you will – undoubtedly – fail. My way of getting past the sting is to say no, I’m just not going to let this get me down.” Sonia Sotomayor, United States Supreme Court Justice
SWEET DREAMS, Baby